Running Linux For Windows Users

February 27, 2014

I wanted to test out a database system (VoltDB) that didn’t run on Windows, so I needed a way to run a Linux installation, although I had zero experience with running that OS. I decided to run it in a virtual machine on my test PC (I decided against a dual boot Windows/Linux system, because I use remote desktop to access the test PC). VoltDB requires a 64 bit operating system as well.
I chose to run Xubuntu, which is a variant of Ubuntu. Xubuntu was recommended since it doesn’t use the Unity desktop and would consume less resources, which would be important in a virtual environment.
So I ran into several issues with the install, so a few steps were necessary before installing the OS. First, my PC had virtualization disabled by default, I needed to go into the BIOS, under Performance => Virtualization and set that value to ‘On’.
Next, I downloaded Oracle VirtualBox ( to run the VM. Unfortunately, running the latest version (4.3.6) had a bug that wouldn’t allow me to run a 64 bit OS, so I chose an older version (4.2.14) to download.
Then I obtained the OS from , in my case getting the latest 64 bit LTS (Long Term Support) release (12.04). I got an ISO image to install.
In VirtualBox, select ‘New’ to create a new VM, on the following screens, I used these settings:
Name and OS: Name = ‘VoltDB’ : Type = ‘Linux’ : Version = ‘Ubuntu (64 bit)’
Memory Size: VoltDB needs a minimum of 4 GB, although you’ll get a warning if the setting is more than 2/3 of the available memory.
Hard Drive: ‘Create a virtual hard drive file’
Hard Drive File Type: VDI
Storage On Physical Drive: Dynamically Allocated
File Location And Size: Folder name and size of virtual drive – I used 20 GB as the size.

Select the newly created VM and ‘Settings’:
‘Storage’: Storage Tree – Controller: IDE – Click plus sign to add CD/DVD drive
‘Choose Disk’ – Navigate to ISO – OK
‘Network’: Adapter 1 – Change ‘Attached To’ to ‘Bridged Adapter’ – OK

Start the VM. After a minute or two to boot up, you’ll come to an install screen for the OS. Select the ‘Install Xubuntu’ option. Most of the setup is intuitive, I did select the ‘Enable Updates’ options, and for ‘Installation Type’ – ‘Erase Disk and Install’.
After completing, restart and then apply any updates.

Michael Stonebraker

January 26, 2014

The Software Engineering Radio podcast recently had Michael Stonebraker as a guest to discuss his take on the future of relational databases.
Dr. Stonebraker is a professor at MIT, and is currently part of the VoltDB team, which is a distributed ACID/SQL database management system.
In the interview, he talks about how he sees the current relational database world breaking into three directions: One to NoSQL, the Data Warehousing segment moving toward columnstore storage, and the remaining segment moving to in-memory tables, to get away from locking and other overhead associated with current OLTP processing. He also discusses the value of ACID compliance, which is discarded by most NoSQL systems.
There’s also this post with an accompanying slideshow and a video with a more in depth discussion of the same topics.

July 17, 2015:
Added some additional links:
Urban Myths About SQL – Slides

2014 Turing Award speech video

One Size Fits All – An Idea Whose Time Has Come And Gone (Video)

2013 SQL Tribal Awards

January 12, 2014

Congratulations to Atlanta MDF for winning the 2013 Tribal Award for the best technical user group.
Winners List

Outlook – Clear email address auto-complete cache

July 6, 2010

Recently, my company got a new domain name, and I wanted to flush out the Outlook auto-completion entries with the old domain name.

In Windows Explorer: %APPDATA%\Microsoft\Outlook

delete all NK2 files

Close and re-open Outlook